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Dispatch: 23 January 2017
Guide to Neophema & Neopsephotus Gener/Campagne, Alai/Paper/0980492416/S017-F
From a review by Dr Terry Martin BVSc:
Dr Alain Campagne has been keeping birds since the 1970s and since 2000 has been seriously involved in the breeding of Neophema and Neopsephotus species. He is one of the growing number of 'modern' aviculturists who have embraced the internet and participate in international forums. These global discussions have evolved and expanded with the internet and have been the impetus for the universal naming system for parrot mutations now in widespread use around the world.
This new title, published by ABK Publications, began life in 2006 when first published in French as Les EuphÞmes-NÚophÞmes et NÞopsÞphotes. The photography in this original edition was stunning, but unfortunately English speakers like me could not benefit from the text-although the universal naming system allowed easy identification of the photographs! When, in 2007, ABK Publications informed me that they intended to translate this book, I was immediately excited because I knew that Dr Campagne's book was filled with images of mutations and colours from Europe, many of which we have never seen in Australia.
The translation of his book has given Dr Campagne the opportunity to update and revise the text with the very latest information available. He has also outdone himself by expanding the photographic collection to include high-quality images of virtually all colours currently known in these species of parrots, both from Europe and around the world. The author is clearly a photographer at heart and he has taken special care in this department to produce a visually stunning catalogue of mutation colours.
The early sections of the book provide all the basic information which any new breeder of Neophema and Neopsephotus species would need to know about their care and management, covering the topics of Housing, Feeding and Breeding in detail. Avian veterinarian Dr Bob Doneley has contributed a thorough Health and Disease section with plenty of information specific to these species of parrots. Dr Campagne then discusses pigmentation, mutations and genetics, in general terms, so that the reader can understand what the different names mean and how they produce their colours in different birds.
Each species is dealt with individually and includes an outline of its natural habitat, a description of the bird and a discussion of the species as an avicultural specimen. Every established colour mutation is then discussed in detail and illustrated superbly. The Turquoisine Parrot section alone has well over 60 photographs of different colour morphs. The Scarlet-chested Parrot chapter has over 90 photographs! It is here that the reader will find a departure from the standard A Guide to... format, in that the vast majority of photographs in the species sections are displayed as quarter pages and include a very large number of full-page portraits. The book also has a Glossary of the technical genetic terms used in the book and an extensive Bibliography of useful references.
This is yet another title from ABK Publications which should become an essential part of any good avicultural library.